To say that the mood around our home is somber is to put it mildly. The old phrase “if momma ain’t happy, ain’t nobody happy” is living proof around here. My Sabres have pretty much laid a giant crap egg and the Ottawa Senators are at this point about 98.3419% sure to win the Eastern Conference finals. They only have 1 more game to win…and well, we would have to win 4. Odds are not in our favor and after how we played tonight(our wonderful goalie aside) we deserve to lose. At least last year they lost, but they had their dignity…I’m not sure where they put it this year, but it’s so not there.
Needless to say there was much tequila and chocolate to try and make it better…but of course it did not work. This cake did come close to helping though. Peanut studded caramel goodness….but it still doesn’t win my favorite player a Stanley Cup
Caramel-Peanut Topped Brownie Cake
For the cake:
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
¼ tsp salt
1 stick(8 TBSP) unsalted butter, cut into 8 pieces
3 ounces bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
3 large eggs
½ cup light brown sugar
¼ cup sugar
3 TBSP light corn syrup
½ tsp vanilla extract
For the topping:
2 cups sugar
½ cup water
1 ½ TBSP light corn syrup
2/3 cup heavy cream
2 TBSP unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 cup salted peanuts
Butter and flour a 8 inch springform pan. Line bottom of pan with parchment paper. Put the pan on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
To make the cake: Whisk the flour, baking soda and salt together. Melt chocolate and butter together using a double boiler.
In a large bowl whisk the eggs and sugars together until well blended. Whisk in the corn syrup, followed by the vanilla. Whisk in the melted butter and chocolate. Still working with a whisk, gently stir in the dry ingredients, mixing only until they are incorporated. You will have a thick, smooth, shiny batter. Pour the batter into the pan and jiggle the pan a bit to even out the batter.
Bake the cake at 350F for 40-45 minutes, or until a knife inserted into the center comes out almost clean. Transfer the pan to a rack and cool he cake for 15 minutes,then run a knife between the cake and the pan and remove the sides of the pan. During baking the cake probably will have puffed to the top of the pan don’t be concerned if tit sinks a little or it if develops a crater in the center. Cool the cake to room temperature.
When the cake is completely cool, invert it, remove the base of the pan and peel off the paper. Wash and dry the springform pan, and return the cake to it right side up. Refasten the sides around the cake.
To make the topping:
Put the sugar, water and corn syrup in a medium heavy bottomed saucepan, stir just to combine the ingredients and then put the pan over medium-high heat. Heat, without stirring , until the caramel turns deep amber., 5-10 minutes. Lower the heat a bit and, standing back from the saucepan add the cream and butter. When the spatters are less vehement, stir to calm down the caramel and dissolve any lumps. Stir in the peanuts, and pour the caramel and peanuts into a 1-quart Pyrex measuring cup or heat proof bowl.
Spoon the peanuts on top of the cake. Then spoon the caramel on top of those. You will have extra caramel leftover to use on something else…like ice cream! You’ll have a layer about ¼ inch high. Allow the topping to set to room temperature-about 20 minutes before serving.
To serve, run a blunt knife between the caramel and the pan and simply remove the sides of the springform. If this isn’t the case, hit the sides with some hot air from a hairdryer or wrap th sides in a towel moistened with hot water.
Source: Adapted from(where else) Baking: Form My Home To Yours by Dorie Greenspan, Houghton Mifflin 2006